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Dubya and the unborn

Observer Viewpoint | Tuesday, November 8, 2005

There were a lot of little crosses on South Quad this weekend.

This happens periodically. As I’m sure we’re all quite aware, the crosses represent the abortions performed in the U.S. In years past, they have been a protest from a vocal minority to the evil majority in government. Today, though, it’s time. Time to acknowledge the obvious.

There is, finally, no evil majority holding good people and their good old-fashioned values down. There hasn’t been for years. The party with the anti-abortion plank has controlled both houses on Congress for how long now?

Wake up, conservatives. You’re getting snowed here.

George Bush doesn’t care about unborn people.

Think about it. How many chances has the Republican leadership had to ban abortion, either piecemeal or wholesale? How many pork-barrel projects have they waved through without so much as a by-your-leave to the American people? How many bills establishing immediately obscure holidays, how many bills filling the coffers of campaign contributors? And yet, how many anti-abortion bills have passed the House? The Senate?

How many have even been proposed?

I’m not asking you to believe me based on my unblemished conservative track record. (I haven’t had one of those for years now.) Nor am I merely Bush-bashing, as much fun as that can be. No, all I want is for you to look at the evidence.

Abortion is one of those conservative issues that I have great sympathy for, along with fiscal responsibility and protection of personal freedoms. I won’t support every spending cut, but I like the idea. Similarly, I am not convinced that abortion is evil (I’m an atheist, after all), but I like the idea of protecting the defenseless.

Abortion, politically, is a smokescreen. It’s a carrot being dangled in front of the moral values constituency – and the danglers are the most amoral people in America, men and women who have devoted their lives to the exploitation of their fellow man. You’ve seen them rip off the poor people of the Third World for factory and agricultural labor, seen them poison our waterways and level whole mountains in their reckless abandon for wealth. Now it’s your turn. You are the exploitees, the ones being lied to to your faces.

You and I, we probably disagree on a lot of things. But here, our interests coincide: it’s time for these con artists to leave office. My colleagues in the progressive movement are aghast at the thought that abortion may be recriminalized, but I say that if that’s the knight I have to sacrifice to take the queen of social justice and a foreseeable end to poverty, it’s a fair trade.

Today is election day. There aren’t any interesting races, and the news flashes tonight won’t be about hanging chads or Diebold. But symbolically, today, let’s take stock of who our political friends – or rather enemies – really are.